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Old 07-31-2016, 01:18 PM   #1
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Drain Backup


Well, our washer drain backed up and there was quite a lot of water on the floors.

After doing some research, this seems to be one of the first and most common issues with older homes. The drain cannot keep up with the high flow of the evacuation pumps in newer washers. I tested this by putting the cold water hose from the washer into the drain pipe and turned it on. It started to fill within 10 seconds and the valve wasn't completely open yet.

I put a tape measure down there and it got to 39" before it bottomed out. Not sure if that means anything, but I'm not sure if this is an issue with a stoppage or lack of capacity. The pipe OD is 2.5". It's cast iron.

Since we had to call our insurance company to get drying equipment to the house, I'm thinking I should get this looked at by a plumber or drain cleaning service.

Does anyone have any idea what's going on? We only have a couple of days of clean clothes left.
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Old 07-31-2016, 02:25 PM   #2
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Re: Drain Backup


You probably have a blockage. Could be a collapsed pipe, roots, etc.
A plumber with drain cleaning equipment is your best bet. Also ask if he has a camera so you can see what is going on after he gets the water flowing again.

Has the gas company been doing any line replacements in your area.

Drain Backup-sewer-septic-line-illustration.jpg

Last edited by joed; 07-31-2016 at 02:29 PM.
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Old 07-31-2016, 08:50 PM   #3
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Re: Drain Backup


Thanks for the reply. We have moved to an established neighborhood that has not had any utility work for a while. I used a mirror and flashlight to look down the drain and there is definitely something in there. There's a white mass that looks like it's blocking a trap. When I stuck my tape measure in there again, the end retrieved something white.
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Old 08-01-2016, 06:05 AM   #4
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Re: Drain Backup


Why are you not running a snake down the drain instead of a tape measure?
First place for a plug is going to be at the trap right near the washer.
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Old 08-01-2016, 03:50 PM   #5
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Re: Drain Backup


Get your drain cleaned by a professional.
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Old 08-01-2016, 10:46 PM   #6
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Re: Drain Backup


Well the problem has been resolved by a pro.

I have no snake yet and we had to call in a water drying company through our homeowners insurance, so to avoid future issues and claim denials, we opted to have it cleaned out professionally.
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Old 08-04-2016, 11:07 PM   #7
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Re: Drain Backup


You probably will have temporary relief until roots grow back into the main line. Make sure you clean all of the plumbing lines and plan on having the main line cleared again in a year or two.
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